The beginning of this school year started with quite a challenge for 5th grade students in PE.
Their task was to form three different teams in their class; create a team name, team cheer, be given roles and responsibilities and ultimately, teach themselves!
We first started this approach with basketball. We had six teams throughout 5th grade; SDJA Lions, SDJA Starz, VSCO Turtles, Golden Warriors and the other SDJA Lions team! Each lesson, I would tell the team manager what we would be working on, whether it be passing, dribbling, shooting etc, and then, the team coach would deliver drills to help their team improve on these skills.
After careful observation, I would award each team a mark out of 5 for the following categories; sportsmanship, leadership, warm up/drills and bonus points. I would then share these results with the record keeper. These points were very important as the team with the most points at the end of the Sport Education season would win the challenge!
After a very successful first season, I asked the teams for feedback and a lot of the students wanted to do this again for soccer. I was also given the suggestion that we should have a ‘team spirit leader’ as a role. This was included and a new category, ‘team spirit’, was added for the points system.
The 5th grade students have done such a remarkable job and I have seen such a huge improvement in their confidence, communication and leadership. It is important for students to feel autonomy over their learning and this opportunity has been effective for this.
We are a few weeks into the soccer season and each team is performing brilliantly! It will definitely be a close competition and may all come down to the final tournament that will take place the very last lesson.